Some of the biggest questions IT administrators and business owners are asking right now are in regard to their communications solution. The choices may be overwhelming for decision makers who don't ask the right questions. The following points are important to consider as you decide what phone system is best for your company. Download our Q&A below for answers to these questions:
- What phone system should I buy?
- Who should I buy my phone system from?
- What can I expect as I implement a new VoIP phone system?
- What are the most important considerations for a phone system?
VLCM has installed over 150 IP telephony systems with over 9,000 handsets deployed across multiple states. As one of the top Rocky Mountain ShoreTel parnters that supplies VoIP phone systems, VLCM can help businesses answer these questions.
ShoreTel's Unified Communications capabilities leverage the power of VoIP to integrate communications tasks. Built brilliantly simple, ShoreTel brings together VoIP telephony, instant messaging and video conferencing, mobility, and collaboration capabilites for a seamless business environment.
ShoreTel: Best VoIP System
Beyond mere business phone systems: unified communications.
Streamline the work of administrators and end users alike with unified communications. ShoreTel's business phone system capabilities are transforming the way people work. VLCM partners with ShoreTel to provide our customers with the best phone systems and unified communication solutions in the industry.
Who should you buy your phone system from?
VLCM has proven to be a valuable partner in deploying and maintaining phone systems, and is arguably the largest ShoreTel dealer in Utah.
VLCM has written and responded to many RFPs that help cities, counties, states, and businesses decide which VoIP phone system they should purchase and deploy. Due to the overwhelming amounts of information that one could find on ShoreTel, we have compiled the information into the critical parts of a system that an IT administrator should consider before deploying a solution. View below to download the entire ShoreTel RFP with helpful information for choosing your phone system.
Questions and Answers
1.3 Describe what components in your system are Hot Swappable (i.e. "critical" components), and list any associated advantages and disadvantages.
Each switch is independent of the other switches and can be “hot-swapped” in the event of a failure without having to bring the entire system down. By merely using a standard DB9 console cable, the administrator can easily configure the same static IP address as the voice switch to be replaced. Then the administrator uses the web-based management interface to tell the system that the new voice switch is replacing the old switch. The voice switch will complete one reboot to receive the same firmware version, then reboot a second time to get its copy of the management database. These steps take just three minutes, at which time the switch is ready and functioning as the old one was before the failure.
The management server can also be replaced with a standby server with DoubleTake software loaded and preconfigured. Another option to replacing a dead management/voicemail server is to take a cleanly installed Windows Server, copy the ShoreWare server’s data to the new server, run the install executable, and within 15 minutes have a fully functioning server with data and voicemail functioning it was at the time of the most recent backup.
Client phones are also easily added, managed and replaced. Again through the intuitive management interface, the phones are self-discovered on the network and can easily be associated to a user. A user can even associate a phone to him/herself by logging into voicemail then into the phone. This can be a permanent or temporary assignment as desired.
1.6 Describe your system's Scalability, and list any associated advantages and disadvantages.
Each ShoreGear switch has its own power and Ethernet connections. Because there is no chassis to restrict growth, the ShoreTel solution can scale from two users to ten thousand users with no breaking points or forklift upgrades that other solutions incur. Keep in mind, this is one system distributed over multiple sites, not multiple systems tied together.
Again because of its unique architecture, the components are location-independent. This means that as long as the components can communicate with each other via IP, they can reside anywhere on the network.
1.9 What type of VoIP prioritization does your product support? (i.e. TOS, Diffserve, 802.1p, etc). Please list advantages and disadvantage.
Prioritization of ShoreTel voice traffic can be done via various different QoS methods. For example, the phones can receive either from DHCP or manually 802.1p and 802.1q information. It is possible to also prioritize traffic via appropriate TCP and UDP port numbers that the ShoreTel system uses for call control and media streams. A highly preferred method is to have the ShoreTel system mark its voice traffic with an appropriate DiffServ code point (DSCP) number.
Each of these methods of traffic differentiation can provide the necessary networking devices, such as switches and routers, with enough information with which these devices can know how to appropriately prioritize the traffic. With each of the critical network devices correctly configured, the voice packets will be prioritized above other traffic types and less important traffic will be the first to be held or dropped at the points of congestion.